Sunday, March 28, 2010

Benz Updates

There has been a lot of activity around the roadster this month. The major project was the complete rebuild of the suspension. I've been wanting to do this for some time, and I finally got the courage and the financial wherewithal to do it (thank you, tax return). Needless to say, it ended up being a major project and I was happy to have someone else with the tools, expertise and experience to make it happen.

As it turns out, most of the parts needed replacing. The car received 4 new shocks, subframe mounts, steering damper, drag link, engine mounts, rear springs, and a few other things that I've probably forgotten. They also rebuilt and adjusted the steering gear. Finally, they did a full 4 wheel alignment.

The difference, as you can expect is completely amazing. The handling and accuracy of the steering is totally improved. It makes it so easy and enjoyable to drive and was certainly worth the effort.

Moving on, I also completed the springtime oil change. The service shop also mentioned that the engine was leaking oil from the valve covers. They offered to fix them, but I went ahead and ordered a couple of new gaskets with the intention of doing it myself. I got the one on the passenger side done, but held off on the other. I really don't see any oil leaks coming from that area - most of the leaks I would guess to be coming fro the rear main seal or oil pan. Hard to say really, but to get to the other gasket would require some disassembly of the fuel system. That isn't something I really want to deal with, so I've decided to quit while I'm ahead.

Finally, I sprung for a new stereo head unit. When I ordered it, I also got an adaptor they sell to cover the new harness to the old one. A few minutes with a soldering iron and the new wiring worked perfectly. I now have FM radio (HD radio too), a CD player and an iPod connector. Fidelity is improved. It does leave me wanting a little bit better system, but this will do for now.

For the rest of the year, I'm probably looking at the annual brake fluid change, that other valve cover gasket if I get the guts, and seeing what I can do about the convertible top linkage. Otherwise, we are really for spring!

...And 5 days of rain in the forecast....

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